Programs > Urban Agriculture Program > Hügelkultur

What is Hügelkultur?

hugelkultur row

Hügelkultur: ‘Hügel’ mound + ‘kultur’ cultivation; Hügelkultur is the practice of mounding soil over materials which assist the soil in regenerating itself through increased water retention, the slow release of nutrients, habitat creation and complexity. The process in general involves building a mound of woody material (typically rotting wood of varying diameters) and covering with layers of organic material (often referred to as ‘green manure’), compost, and top soil. While this practice has grown in popularity over recent years, it has been used in various forms by European cultures dating back many centuries. Today Hügelkultur is being used in drier regions to retain water for growing crops and in challenging urban sites to regenerate soil and provide nutritious garden space for both perennial and annual food crops.

hugelkultur glass side view hugelkultur mound

Upcoming Hügelkultur Events


Event Info

Thur, April 13

8:30 - 11:30

Hillside Church Community Garden, Kent

KCD will partner with World Relief to present a hands-on-workshop creating container Hügelkultur for an urban yard.  

Meet at Hillside Church south parking lot at 8:30 am.  Bring gloves and be prepared to work in inclement weather. 

Workshop to be led by Jarret Griesemer, KCD Urban Agriculture Specialist.

Register for this FREE event at:

Wed, April 19
5-7 pm

CitySoil Farm, Renton

KCD hands-on-workshop for planting out an established Hügelkultur mound at CitySoil Farm, Renton.  CitySoil is a 1.5-acre farm used as a demonstration and education site located at the King County Wastewater Treatment Plant in Renton. 

NOTE:  Due to high security at the Wastewater Treatment Plant, prior registration through Eventbrite is required for admission onto the campus.

Register for this FREE event at:

Sat, April 22


KCD Staff will be at the Museum of History & Industry’s Edible City Science Fair with our Hügelkultur display and available to answer questions.  More details:

June 8 – 11

Vashon Island

KCD will hold an on-going Hügelkultur build over the course of the 4 day Sheep Dog Classic on Vashon Island.  Watch for more details in the May KCD Newsletter.

July 1

Various Locations

KCD Staff is putting together a self-guided tour of Hügelkultur sites across King County (and beyond). Watch for more details in the June KCD Newsletter.

Hügelkultur Resources

Landscape Firms
Oasis Edible Naturescapes is a Permaculture design/build firm in Seattle.

Stone Soup Gardens is a full service edible landscaping company specializing in beautiful sustainable gardens, connecting folks to their environment and their food.

hugelkultur constructionLooking for woody debris and logs to create your own Hügelkultur mound?

Check out:
(KCD assumes no responsibility for interactions with ChipDrop or their affiliates.  Be sure to read the “Expectations of Service” page before signing up for delivery.)

Recommended Websites

In the Media

Hugelkultur Comes to Calvin
KCD Hugelkultur Demo Project Report

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